Today marked the beginning of the men’s ice hockey tournament in Sochi, Russia in the 22nd Olympic Games. Kicking off the tournament was a game between Team Sweden and the Czech Republic, which aired at 12 o’clock Eastern Time.
The game started off with ten minutes of Team Sweden being outplayed the Czech Republic. The first Swedish goal came from an interference penalty called against the Czech Republic’s Michal Barinka. With their first power play of the game, Sweden’s Erik Karlsson scored off a shot from the point assisted by Oliver Ekman-Larsson. Shortly after Karlsson’s first goal, Patrik Berglund of the St. Louis Blues, had a short side goal to give Sweden a 2-0 lead, with New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist earning an assist.
The second period started out with the same energy as the first period ended, with the Captain, and Detroit Red Wings’ forward, Henrik Zetterberg scoring another goal to bring Team Sweden up 3-0 against the Czech Republic. After Zetterberg’s goal, the Czechs replaced goalie Jakub Kovar with Alexander Salak. Soon after the switch in goalies, and on their third power play of the game, Karlsson scored his second goal of the night, leaving spectators to wonder if the Czech’s would ever score? They answered that question with a goal scored by New Jersey Devil’s player Marek Zidlicky, putting the puck just over Lundqvist’s shoulder. Just two minutes later Jeromir Jagr, another of the New Jersey Devils’ players on the Czech Republic’s team, and former New York Ranger, scored. Jagr’s goal was scored off of a missed goalie interfere call by the referee which tied goalie Henrik Lundqvist up to allow the puck to slide by him and into the corner. The second period ended ten minutes later with just one penalty occurring, and a good back and forth game developed between the two teams. The score ending the second period was 4-2, with Team Sweden still leading.
The third period of the Sweden vs Czech Republic game was a good period of hockey to watch. Both teams played aggressive and well-rounded. The Czechs managed to register 15 shots on goal, with Henrik Lundqvist saving each one in a great third period. At the end of the period neither team managed to score despite both Sweden and the Czech Republic shooting 5 and 15 shots on goal respectively. The end of the third period came and went without Czech pulling their goalie to put an extra attacker on the ice, and resulted in Sweden winning 4-2. Swedish goalie, Henrik Lundqvist, had 27 saves and is well on his way to making this another memorable Olympics for him. Sweden plays again on Friday at 7:30 AM ET vs Switzerland and can be found on NBCSN.